We’ve been hard at work in the Labs department on some exciting new projects. Starting today we would like to announce the opening of the Labs GeoIP alpha release. For those that aren’t familiar with it, GeoIP enables you to identify various things about people that come to your site such as their location, organization, connection speed, and user type.

This can be used for a number of important applications such as personalizing web content, tailoring advertising, complying with legal regulations, and many other uses. The GeoIP look-up actually happens on WP Engine’s servers so there is no need to connect with an external service to provide the data, which can be expensive and result in slow load times. This makes it faster than any third party service and appropriate for many exciting business applications.

One of the best features of Labs’ GeoIP implementation is the caching integration we have built into the feature. We are very excited that GeoIP integrates with our EverCache technology to keep sites fast and scalable.

Imagine you run a hotel with 6 locations. If a person hits your home page from one of those locations, you’d love your website to show local information, like walking maps from the hotel to food, attractions, and mass transit. For everyone else you’re in “sell” mode — showing off the views and amenities and encouraging reservations. But this requires a very special page-caching configuration — one in which you have 7 different versions of the page, in very specific contexts. If you took a simplistic approach and said “one cache per city,” you’d have 1000s of individual city-based caches, all but 6 of which are identical. This type of highly custom advanced caching is already set up in the Labs GeoIP.

Without this cache integration a standard GeoIP solution would require you to disable caching and make the website much slower and the experience less reliable. Because we uniquely integrate our GeoIP with the cache, you still have the scale and speed of WP Engine, but with the customization of GeoIP.

Update: WP Engine GeoIP is available to WP Engine customers on a Business plan or higher. For more information and to take GeoIP for a spin, contact WP Engine at [email protected] or 877-973-6446.

You can also reach out to our Support Team via the User Portal

tomasTomas Puig is the head of Labs for WP Engine. His career started at NASA Ames Research Center where he worked on computer security and web development. Tomas then worked in the digital ad agency industry with firms LEVEL, COG1, Rosetta, and Propane—notable clients included Facebook, New Relic, Kaiser, Cisco, and Google. Projects under his direction have won 4 Gold National ADDYs and several Cannes CLIOs. Tomas loves video games, Legos, and playing with his dog Éowyn.